Monday, September 21, 2020

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  • Me-focused culture or, more broadly, modern culture? The theory that explains the “causal relationship between psychological difficulties and self-centered endeavors” is proposed in Liah Greenfeld’s Mind, Modernity, Madness: the Impact of Culture on Human Experience. From the description of the book: Citizens of the twenty-first century enjoy unprecedented freedom to become the authors of their personal destinies. Empowering as this is, it also places them under enormous psychic strain. They must constantly appraise their identities, manage their desires, and calibrate their place within society. For vulnerable individuals, this pressure is too much. Training her analytic eye on extensive case histories in manic depression and schizophrenia, Greenfeld contends that these illnesses are dysfunctions of selfhood caused by society’s overburdening demands for self-realization. In her rigorous diagnosis, madness is a culturally constituted malady.